Turandot Sets Record
Opera fascinates fans with its long run produced by Gloria Opera Co.

Opera Turandot 2005 delighted the audience during its run to break the length of performance period, having the highest production expense with top performers jointly staged by four production companies including Gloria Opera Co., Beseto Opera Troupe, Seoul Opera Troupe and Hangang Opera Troupe.
President Yang Soo-hwa of Gloria Opera Co. appeared to be extremely satisfied with an intense audience reaction for the longest running opera in the country as she got on the stage with singers during the last curtain call of the performance.
She said many opera fans came to the artistic event due to "Mouth-to-mouth rumors"that the musical feast was staged well and performed by renowned performers.
It is not the first time that she used the word first. She led Korean singers and production staff to Paris to stage a Korean opera, "Chun Hyang"last year for the first time. In June of last year, she traveled to Paris with over 100 performers including chorus singers and production staff, along with 14 tons of stage sets to produce the opera.
The over 1,000 strong audience came to view the performance, which was held to commemorate the opening of the high-speed railroad in Korea built with technologies and equipment imported from France as part of the Korea-France cultural exchange. The opera with French translation on the side delighted fans especially French ones, who have a deep curiosity for Korean culture and customs with questions like why should the heroin, Chun Hyang, had to die to keep her chastity for her lover and what is "Yangban"an upper class people in Korean.
In 1995, she was the first also to introduce Korean art to Japan on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of diplomatic resumption between Korea and Japan. Her company staged a Korean opera in Tokyo and the Japanese audience was moved that they watched a Korean opera for the first time in their lives although Korea is only an hour away from Tokyo by air.
President Yang said cultural affairs impress people the most, which is why she think they are the best to introduce Korea to Japanese giving her an immense pride for her as a cultural ambassador.
Korea has made a tremendous stride in economic development, but to Westerners it still is a peripheral state, which is why we should introduce our cultural tradition to foreigners on every chance we have to make them better understand Korea, Yang said.
Yang, who majored in singing at college, didn't want to set up an opera troupe, following her graduation. She married right after she got out of school and continued her study voice at the urging of her husband.

She liked singing from an early age in her youth.
She went to study voice at a graduate school agreeing with her husband that the most valuable asset in life is an academic pursuit. She also studied voice in the U.S., which was followed by a number of private recitals. She found out that recitals could be successful, depending on how they are produced. She thought that she might like to try to produce musical events by herself. It finally happened in 1991; she set up Gloria Opera Co. with Gloria meaning returning all the success to God, she being a good Christian.
Her company staged the tale of Chun Hyang, during the past 15 years, knowing that the love story in Korean life attracted a great number of fans like "Romeo and Juliet"that has to do with the love between men and women.
She said,"The Tale of Chun Hyang"has been the best art event to introduce Korea overseas, although the opera is not as popular as it should be in Korea."Yang said that was the reason why she chose to stage Turandot 2005 in the same level as it was performed in Italy, one of the birthplaces of Western opera.
In Korea, the level of opera fans is not that sophisticated. The names of singers count a lot in attracting fans and the long run of Turandot this time also has been related to it.

A scene from opera Turandot.

President Yang Soo-hwa of Gloria Opera Co.

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